Core Kitchen: the vegan CEO reimagining how restaurants work | pebble magazine
Can a restaurant not only survive by making food fresh every day but thrive and help grow its local community? Hug-prone Corey Rennell, CEO of CORE Kitchen is reimagining the food system in Oakland, California.
The latest of our guest features series #pebblesmakeripples is from B Corp’s magazine, B The Change. This article was originally published on B the Change.
Corey Rennell likes hugs. “There should be more hugs in the world,” Rennell, the founder and CEO of CORE Foods, says after hugging one of his patrons. There’s not much the 31-year-old doesn’t like. Except for the mainstream food system in the United States. And he’s set on upending it. His latest plan to do so has manifested through CORE Kitchen — an Oakland, California, restaurant that uses only fresh produce. It had its first profitable week in August, and it will celebrate its first anniversary in mid-December.
“What I’m really passionate about is people eating new food,” Rennell says. “I think we realised to do that, we had to go into food service and we had to open our own restaurant, where we could produce food that only lasts a day.”
Fresh, unpackaged fare hasn’t always been Rennell’s focus. CORE Kitchen is an extension of Rennell’s CORE Foods brand, which has sold CORE Meal bars — made of organic oats, nuts and fruit — at health-food stores nationwide since 2010. But when CORE Kitchen opened after a successful Kickstarter campaign to raise $90,000 for kitchen equipment, Rennell felt like he’d hit his stride.